Australian World Superbike rider Chris Vermeulen recently made a very tough decision to sit out most of the 2010 WSBK season in order to recuperate from major knee surgery; his lateral meniscus had to be replaced. The injury requiring the operation actually occurred at the first event this year at – of all places – his home track of Phillip Island. He came back for three more rounds (six races), but decided to sit out the rest based on sound medical advice. Most of the time since the surgery was spent in Spain while he endured physical therapy on his long road to recovery. Vermeulen is serious about healing this injury and is closely following the program set out by his physicians and taking each and every step necessary to get him to 100% by next year. He most definitely wants to be in top shape for the 2011 season.
Just this week, Vermeulen returned to his home near Australia’s Sunshine Coast to be with his family during the summer months. Perhaps, by the time you are reading this, he should be finally free of the need for crutches. If all is going well, you might find him at the beach surfing or sweating in the gym – with physical therapy just about everywhere in between. Once he is ready, the first step is some time on a dirt bike and getting precious seat time. The next time he throws a leg over a WSBK machine should be in early January when he will test the new 2011 Kawasaki ZX-10R in race trim at Malaysia’s Sepang Circuit.
The Queensland native may not get a full pre-season test schedule completed due to the continued recovery, but he should still be able to get enough practice in to be ready for the first race of the new season. The FIM World Superbike Championship will return with the first round scheduled to be Australia’s Phillip Island during 25 – 27 February. Chris Vermeulen will be sitting on a factory Kawasaki Superbike somewhere on that grid waiting to make up for some lost time and itching to taste the post-race champagne.
Written by J.C. Current, Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com